Pangolin found in Ayala Alabang to return home in Palawan

Aileen Cerrudo   •   August 19, 2021   •   674

The pangolin that was found in Barangay Ayala Alabang in Muntinlupa will soon be homeward bound to its natural habitat in Palawan.

Last Monday (August 16), a resident turned over a Philippine pangolin to the National Wildlife Rescue and Research Center (NWRRC) after finding it in their backyard. Rescuers immediately responded and took custody of the pangolin which was named ‘Pandi’.

According to the NWRRC, Pandi has minor cuts around his body but his health is in stable condition.

Bukod doon sa mga minor scratch niya wala pa namang alarming na sign na medyo kailangan naming bantayan ng sobra, (Aside from minor scratches [Pandi] does not have any alarming signs that would need our utmost attention),” according to NWRRC chief and in-house veterinarian Dr. Glenn Maguad.

Pandi is now scheduled to return to Palawan, however, no date has been set yet.

Pangolins are considered a critically endangered species and the most traffic wildlife. Pangolins are being traded primarily as ingredients in traditional Chinese medicine.

Maguad said pangolins are considered gardeners of the forest because they like to dig rotten trees for termites. They contribute to the ecosystem through soil conditioning. -AAC (with reports from Janice Ingente)

Duterte to inaugurate expanded Puerto Princesa Port in Palawan

Robie de Guzman   •   November 3, 2021

President Rodrigo Duterte is set to inaugurate the completed expansion project at the Puerto Princesa Port in Palawan on Thursday, Nov. 4, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) said.

In a statement, the DOTr said the expansion project, which includes the construction of an additional back-up area, was completed on July 20 despite the pandemic.

“The project was carried out to make the port more productive, particularly its long-haul connection to Metro Manila and planned connectivity to the island of Mindoro via the Port of Bulalacao,” the department said.

For the past five years, the DOTR said that the Puerto Princesa Port underwent several expansions and necessary improvements as it serves as the province’s primary maritime gateway for commerce, trade, and tourism.

Around 1,500 international and local vessels call at Puerto Princesa Port per year while around 200,000 passengers use the port annually, including almost 6,000 cruise-tourism passengers. It also handles approximately 1.7 metric tons of cargoes.

The DOTr said the expansion of the Puerto Princesa Port forms part of the 472 commercial and social-tourism projects completed by the DOTr and the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) nationwide since the Duterte administration took over in 2016, resulting in improved maritime connectivity and mobility in the entire archipelago.

DOTr Secretary Arthur Tugade previously inaugurated several completed Palawan port projects in the Port of San Fernando in El Nido, Port of Bataraza in Barangay Buliluyan, and Borac Port in Coron, linking the island province to other parts of the country and nearby countries.

The completed seaport projects, under the massive Build, Build, Build program of the Duterte administration, are expected to generate employment for locals and usher economic and tourism growth as the country recovers from the pandemic.

Duterte will be joined by Tugade, and PPA General Manager Jay Santiago during the inauguration.

Manila Bay dolomite beach, sa Disyembre na muling bubuksan sa publiko – DENR

Robie de Guzman   •   November 3, 2021

MANILA, Philippines – Hindi muna bubuksan sa publiko ang Manila Bay dolomite beach habang isinasagawa ang rehabilitasyon sa kabuuan ng baywalk.

Ayon sa Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), kailangan munang matapos ang rehabilitasyon sa man-made beach bago ito muling buksan sa publiko.

Paliwanag ni DENR Undersecretary Jonas Leones, layunin ng pansamantalang pagsasara ng lugar na bigyang-daan ang phase 2 ng rehabilitasyon sa buong Manila Bay dolomite beach na target makumpleto bago matapos ang taon.

Iginiit rin ng DENR na pansamantala lang naman talaga ang pagbubukas ng lugar lalo’t hindi pa rin natatapos ang paglilinis rito dahil sa pandemya.

Ayon kay Leones, manggagaling pa rin sa Cebu ang dolomite sand na itatambak sa bahagi ng Manila Bay sa ilalim ng kontrata ng Department of Public Works and Highways.

“Ang dolomite resources kasi, mga dolomite rocks, di naman siya available sa other regions at pinagkukuhanan po natin, sinisiguro po natin yung pinagkukuhanan natin ay legitimate sources na may permit po sa ating pamahalaan,” ani Leones.

Tiniyak rin ng DENR na tututukan nito ang paglilinis sa tubig sa Manila Bay upang maging ligtas itong languyan ng mga tao.

Isasaayos rin ang drainage system sa Maynila kung saan planong i-divert ang mga drainage sa sewage treatment plant sa lugar.

Plano rin ng DENR na resolbahin ang problema sa mga basurang naaanod mula sa mga karatig-probinsiya ng Cavite, Laguna, at Pampanga.

Manila Bay office exec relieved from post over dolomite beach overcrowding

Robie de Guzman   •   October 27, 2021

MANILA, Philippines ­– The ground commander assigned to oversee the Manila Bay dolomite beach has been relieved from his post over last weekend’s overcrowding incident.

Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Secretary Roy Cimatu announced that he has removed Manila Bay Coordinating Office deputy executive director Jacob Miemban Jr. from his post.

Cimatu said he ordered Miemban’s relief amid the investigation on the overcrowding incident in the dolomite beach.

“We’re not making him a sacrificial lamb. He already said that being the commander, he takes full responsibility for what happened,” Cimatu said.

“While appreciating the gesture of that, kailangan imbestigahan pa rin naman yung nangyari,” he added.

Retired General Ruel Sorilla, who serves as officer-in-charge and director of DENR’s Environmental Law Enforcement and Protection Service, will take over Miemban’s post.

Cimatu said Sorilla has been tasked to strictly implement health protocols in the area that has attracted droves of visitors.

The DENR earlier said it has improved its protocols in admitting visitors to the dolomite beach to prevent the occurrence of similar incident.

It is also eyeing to temporarily close the man-made beach from Oct. 29 to Nov. 3.

The dolomite beach was reopened to the public last Oct. 16 when Metro Manila shifted to COVID-19 Alert Level 3 from Level 4 amid decreasing coronavirus cases.

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